(TL;DR = NEW BOOK PICS BELOW!)
I’m pretty late with an update, but I have plenty that I’ll be sharing over the next month!
So, the book is behind schedule… Like, waay behind schedule. Slowly but surely the book is getting done. The writing has been done for months, but I had to take a step back and stop forcing myself to hit my arbitrary dates. I’ll save all the deadline stress for book #2 when I’ll actually know what I’m doing (that’s my new super-cool Mizgot emoji… feel free to use it 😀 )
There have been a lot of surprises and unexpected learnings for this first book. For instance, I had no idea how odd and nuanced the layout process would be. I probably should have hired out the layout work, per the advice of many smart folks. But I really wanted to learn this process myself so that I could better communicate what I wanted instead of paying for something that didn’t make me happy.
Plus I’m a control freak…
Here’s a quick excerpt from my book, Mizgot. This is a simple little scene with Natalie, the conflicted antagonist of the story, who is hired to steal Mizgot. Ivan is her turbulent ex-boyfriend and criminal partner. Natalie is currently being forced to live somewhere she doesn’t want to so that she can observe Mizgot’s creator, Marvin…
Natalie finished her ice cream and sat fidgeting in front of the holo-vid. It had been a big couple of days for her, and she felt she had pulled off a fairly big job outside of her normal comfort zone. But her agitation wouldn’t subside. Turning off the display, she cleaned up her dishes and proceeded to scrub the bathtub. The apartment still didn’t feel comfortable to her. Not like her previous place, which awaited her in the No Man’s Land area. She worried that squatters would take over her place while she was gone. It was a normal occurrence in that lawless slice of the city. Ivan had promised her that he’d keep an eye on it, but that was hardly reassuring.
After cleaning the kitchen counter for a third time, Natalie had finally had enough. She dug through her bag and pulled out a small plastic vial of eye drops. The vial contained a sedative mixed with a hallucinogen all delivered via nanobots. It was a potent mix. She wasn’t keen on the hallucinogenic portion but it was the only sedative she had on-hand that was quick-acting, and she couldn’t stand another minute of existing in this place.
I’m a brand new writer. Never written and released a book before. Never knew how to write and release a book before. Still learning how to do all of this. But when I sat down to get to work, I almost immediately knew that I was going to hire a professional artist to help bring my idea to life. I didn’t do this because I wanted to make big bucks. I almost assuredly won’t even make my money back for the art work, let alone the editor, the cost of classes etc…
I hired an artist because I wanted people to be able to see what was in my head, and maybe better relate to the writing through the pictures that an expert could provide. But I got so much more!
Working with a professional artist actually allowed me to figure out issues with the story and improve on ideas and scenes based on the artwork itself. Plus, having a bit of a collaborator on the project held me to certain deadlines and standards that I would not have necessarily done otherwise. It gave me someone to talk more in-depth about the project and to bounce ideas off of.
My main regret is not involving more pro-people in this book and not consuming more time of the professionals I did involve. It ended up being an invaluable resource.
Plus there’s this:
Here’s the artist’s (Todd Gamble’s) version of my character, Mizgot.
And here’s my attempt (which Todd based his on!)… I know… Nailed it…
I would’ve paid double to avoid having to put my own artwork in — sorry Todd… 🙂
Schematic of Mizgot, created by artist Todd Gamble. Check out the oh-so important tendril mechanism that our little Frankenstein’s Monster has in her arsenal. The tendrils are sensitive tools allowing Mizgot to read thoughts. At least, that’s what her creator, Marvin, had originally intended…